The Personal Genome Project, which recently began the process of expanding its ranks, is founded on the idea of open consent: if you become a participant, there will be no serious attempt made to keep your DNA sequence or phenotypic data confidential. Participants take an exam and must score 100%; they learn the risks before they sign up. Given the almost-daily revelations about performance-enhancing drugs in baseball, might something akin to the PGP’s libertarian/caveat-emptor approach to genomic information be taken with athletes and PEDs? Jere Longman seems to think it might:
If there is anything to be gained from this latest suspension, hopefully it will be a serious debate about whether punishing athletes is justified or selective persecution. Baseball must ask itself whether it is better to continue harsh punitive measures -– which have had unintended consequences in other sports — or to educate athletes about doping and let them proceed at their own informed risk.